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Maintaining Your Boat Cover Investment

Red Forester outboard bow rider



Protecting your boat investment with the proper boat cover is paramount. Once you select a boat cover, be sure to keep it clean, damage-free, and stored properly in order to ensure longevity.

There are a number of factors to consider when choosing a boat cover in order to maintain your boat cover investment. One, how will the cover be used? Is it stored in summer or winter conditions? Perhaps while tied at a mooring? Does it need to be protected from elements like snow, ice, and hail? Additionally, the shape, style, and size of the boat cover are all important factors to consider. Furthermore, the material from which the cover is made and how it is constructed and reinforced are relevant as well

What to consider when shopping for a boat cover

When shopping for a boat cover, you need to consider factors such as usage, materials, weight, durability, and ruggedness. The more research you put towards selecting the right cover, the longer it will last and the more protection it will provide for your boat.

In addition, you will need to consider how to install the boat cover. Snap-on covers are easy to use, but can be challenging for people with hand strength issues. Tie-down covers are typically used for trailer travel and short-term storage. Yet another style of covers are ratchet strap covers, which are similar to tie-down covers and are also good for trailer hauling and mooring storage.

Once you select the perfect cover for your needs, you must maintain it like any other part of your boat in order to make the investment worth it.

Different boat cover materials

Many different boat cover materials exist, however some materials fare much better than others. Most boat covers on the market are polyester, although acrylic, nylon, canvas, and cotton-polyester blends exist as well. Materials such as acrylic or urethane provide protective coats that can increase water and UV resistance and durability.

A couple of factors to also consider when selecting which material to use is its breathability. Polyester and acrylic are considered the most breathable fabrics and offer good UV resistance. Most boat covers on the market that are prefabricated are made from polyester or polyester cotton blend. Nylon, canvas, and polyester blends are also common for less expensive options.

In addition to breathability and UV protection, weight is also a factor. Lightweight materials are often less durable than acrylic or marine grade coated poyester, however they are much easier to install and remove. Heavier covers are more difficult to install, yet they provide much stronger protection. This is especially crucial if you store your boat in snowy or icy environments.

Lastly, proper boat cover ventilation is key. Make sure whatever boat cover you choose has built in vents. Otherwise, you will need to install vents to prevent the accumulation of water moisture which can lead to mold and mildew.

Maintaining your boat cover investment

No matter the material, it is crucial to properly clean and store your boat cover. As our blog How to Clean a Canvas Boat Cover suggests, a small amount of BoatLIFE’s Boat Cleaner diluted in water and a gentle sponge or soft brush and a bucket of water and a garden hose will do. Our non-phosphate Boat Cleaner is environmentally safe, biodegradable, and gentle enough to clean all substrates without removing wax. It also leaves a pleasant-smelling fragrance.

Boat Cleaner works on all types of boat covers, regardless of materials used. Before cleaning the boat cover with Boat Cleaner, be sure to remove any large debris with a pressurized hose. Then, gently clean with a sponge and water.

Regardless of the type of cover and cleaning process, be sure to dry it thoroughly before storage to prevent mold or mildew. Take great care to ensure your boat cover thoroughly air dries before storage. We recommend that you roll and hang the cover once dry if storing inside a facility.

When shopping for a boat cover, it is important to always consider its application, the materials used and its construction to ensure the cover will last a long time. Protecting your boat with the proper boat cover and maintaining it in storage should always be steps in your boat maintenance routine.

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